Disability Assistance for Children and Young People (Scotland) Regulations 2020: scrutiny report

The Scottish Commission on Social Security's scrutiny report on the draft Disability Assistance for Children and Young People (Scotland) Regulations 2020 with recommendations for the Scottish Government.

Concluding remarks

While welcoming the improvements that the Scottish Government has sought to make within the unavoidable constraints imposed by the priority for a smooth transition and the framing of the Act, we have highlighted in this report a number of technical drafting issues that will need to be addressed by the Scottish Government before these regulations are ready to be laid if unintended consequences are to be avoided. Most are straightforward and in some cases officials have already indicated their intention to make amendments in line with our advice.

As the first transfer of a major benefit, it is entirely reasonable to expect that the process of drafting regulations will reveal numerous issues concerning the alignment and interface between devolved and reserved provision, and that there will be much to learn from this exercise. The Commission does not have a further opportunity to scrutinise a final version of these regulations. However, we observe that it is not uncommon to amend new regulations fairly quickly, usually when operational experience uncovers unintended consequences. In this case, in view of the inevitable challenges of drafting regulations that adequately cater for all eventualities in this new scenario, we suggest there may be merit in actively reviewing the CDP regulations before and after CDP is launched. In our judgement, further review of CDP regulations is likely to be helpful to ensuring that they provide the best starting point for similar disability assistance regulations to follow. This approach is in line with Scottish social security principles (g) and (h).

Recommendation 34: In view of their complexity, length and speed of development, the Scottish Government should continue to review the draft regulations before and after CDP is launched to identify and rectify any immediate issues arising and to ensure a robust basis for developing future Disability Assistance regulations.

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